If you didn’t know, I’m P R E G N A N T ! (Where have you been?) Thirty weeks and two days, and expecting to look into the eyes of a–very wiggly–baby boy sometime in August!
My husband and I just celebrated our first parents’ days. I got some very sweet and encouraging cards from my parents and in-laws, and I got surprise donuts in bed from my husband for my first Mother’s Day! For my husband’s first Father’s Day, I made him an emergency diaper changing kit, complete with a turkey baster for rinsing, a nose plug, and a bio-hazard disposal bag. He was totally surprised, and I think he loved it.
Here’s the point: We’re already parents; we’re not expecting to be parents sometime in the future.
A lot of people refer to us as a mother-to-be and a father-to-be. I just don’t think that’s very accurate. What makes a mom or dad? A child. Do we have a child? Yes! He’s roughly 3½ pounds, and he’s awfully cute! (I can feel his cuteness. A mother just knows.) Oh, and boy does he eat a lot. Yep–we’re parents!
I know, I know… life changes a lot when the baby is actually born and waking you up in the night, yada yada. It also changes when he starts crawling, when he starts walking, and talking, and going to school, and driving, and dating, and… Would anyone say you had to wait for one of those points in the child’s development before you were a “real” parent? Of course not! Why then does birth constitute a milestone your child must complete before he has parents? It doesn’t make sense to me at all; my son is not an orphan.
It reminds me of something a dear, sweet friend said a long time ago. She was talking about how some very well-meaning people said some hurtful things to her after the death of her sweet baby boy in utero. They were trying to be comforting, but it was the opposite. I’ll try my best to paraphrase what I remember:
Many people said to me, in an effort to comfort me, that I’d be a good mom someday. It wasn’t comforting; it was hurtful. Does that mean I was a bad mom to this baby? That I did something wrong and God took him from me because of it?
No, those people for some reason just associate being a parent with having a child who is living outside your uterus. I really don’t understand why at all, because weren’t your thoughts already consumed with hopes, dreams, prayers, and worries for your child, from the moment you realized he existed? Weren’t you already conscious of what you fed him (via your diet) and what you exposed him to (via your environment)? Weren’t you already making sure you got plenty of rest so you could be at your best for him? Sounds like a Momma to me, and a really good one. And you were still a Momma after Jesus carried that little baby Home much sooner than any of us expected.
Hey, all you Mommas and Daddies out there, you became a mom and a dad the moment that one little sperm won the race. That, my dears, is a BABY with a MOMMY and a DADDY. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.